Writer: Hope Katz Gibbs
Design: Michael Gibbs Illustration & Design
Client: Alexandria City Public Schools
Challenge: Create a marketing piece to encourage parent participation in student’s lives. The community that attends the Alexandria City Public Schools is highly diverse, so the piece needed to be simple and appealing so parents would want to pick it up when it was handed out at Back to School night.
Solution: Hope and Michael Gibbs created this colorful refrigerator magnet that offered 20 ways parents can take a more active role in their child’s school lives. We had the same text translated into Spanish, and created a second magnet for ESOL families.
Client feedback: “It’s simplicity is the key to its success,” said Barbara Hunter, director of communications for APCS, who commissioned the job. “It made an impact on our parents who speak limited English, as well as our more affluent families.”
Success story: Although Barbara Hunter only planned to pass out the magnet once, it was reprinted three times.
20 TERRIFIC WAYS TO HELP YOUR CHILD SUCCEED IN SCHOOL: Know the names of your child’s teachers. • Know the name of the principal, too. • Make sure your son or daughter arrives to school on time. • Look through the Student Handbook with your children to make sure they know what is expected of them at school. • Ask your children to show you their agendas every day. • Eat dinner with your children. • Ask them what was the funniest thing that happened at school today. • Ask your children if they have homework—and check it over when they are finished. • If your children are having trouble with homework, tell the teacher. • Have your children read to you every day. • Go to the library and check out books together—some for them, and a few for yourself. While you are there, play a computer game together. • Know the names of their best friends. Hug your children every day. • Tuck a love note into their backpack. • Take a walk outside with your children once a week, and ask what they like best, and what they like ]east, about school. • If you sense there is a problem, don’t be afraid to talk with their teachers. • Meet with your children’s teacher at least twice a veer. • Before your children go to sleep each night, ask them to tell you a story. • Every day, tell your children how proud they make you feel.